Body-positivity model Tess Holliday opens up about struggle with anorexia

With eating disorders on the rise during the pandemic, Holliday is using her struggle to raise awareness for others experiencing the same.
3:20 | 05/06/21

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Transcript for Body-positivity model Tess Holliday opens up about struggle with anorexia
after taking a toll. Tess Holliday revealing her battle with anorexic. With eating disorders on the rise during the pandemic, kayna Whitworth spoke exclusively to Holliday about her struggle and what she wants others to know. Good morning, kayna. Michael, good morning. Now, she says it was hard for her to hear that diagnosis, confusing even and this morning, she says she's proof that eating disorders don't discriminate. This morning, plus size supermodel Tess Holliday revealing her struggle with anorexic. The mother of two saying she was recently diagnosed by a psychologist but has ultimately been struggling with disordered eating most of her life. I always thought that I overate, but then people in my life would say, oh, yeah, I eat more than Tess and it was almost like I wore it as a badge of honor. Reporter: Known for loving and set brailling her curves as a body positive activist, Holliday has been receiving support for her honesty from many but being questioned by some online about how she could love her body and also have an eating disorder. I've had a lot of messages from folks that are anorexic that are livid and angry because they feel like I'm lying. I am plus size but advocating for diversity in larger bodies and so I think for people hearing me say I'm anorexic was really jarring. Reporter: Holliday's dietitian Anna Sweeney says if you think that most eating disorders are visible conditions, you're wrong. Eating disorders don't have to look a certain way. I understand that people look at me and I don't fit what we have seen presented as, you know, the diagnosis for anorexia but then for me that tells me that there's a larger problem which I've been actually saying for years is that we have a lack of diversity and representation in the world. Reporter: Eating disorders are extremely common and may affect nearly one in every ten people. According to a recent study about 9% of the U.S. Population almost 29 million people will have an eating disorder in their lifetime and the numbers are on the rise during the pandemic. The national eating disorders association reporting a 41% increase in calls to their help lines. Holliday sharing highs and lows including her divorce with over 2 million followers on Instagram hoping to reach others that might be facing a similar battle. You wrote I'm the result of a culture that celebrates thinness and equates that to worth but I get to write my own narrative. So tell me what is that story now. I mean the sky's the limit. I actually feel like I can take on the things that life is throwing my way and I have been happier in the last six months through my recovery than I've been in my entire life. I feel whole. I feel at peace. I really feel in my power. Reporter: And she says her dietitian has her focusing on eating three meals a day and doing pilates, also the Cleveland journal of medicine did a study finding that restrictive eating disorders tend to be underrecognized in patients with larger bodies. Guys. Okay, kayna, thanks very much.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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